scrap space tour // 2015

my little scrap space has seen many revisions over the years.

in our smaller house, i made our front closet into my own little space



then i got brave and made an entire wall in our garage.


then we moved to a house with some more elbow room and i now have a fun little corner to call my own.


since moving in almost 2 years ago, my corner has been through a few minor makeovers. to see the latest transformation, i put together a quick little video tour of how i store and organize my goodies.


i hope you enjoy!


happy scrapping!
xo ~andrea

project life organization // 3×4 card storage

hey there, ho there!

when i first showed you my scrap space, i showed you a few boxes full of 3×4 cards. they were not organized. just in there, willy nilly. i swore that was cool with me. but in fact, it was not.

it used to be. it used to be easy to keep track of what i had and where i last saw it.

but that notion no longer remains.

so during the extremely boring super bowl, i made some tabbed dividers with my silhouette and organized the heck outta my 3×4 cards. here’s what i came up with….and i made a video about it!

how do you organize your supplies? i find that when the types of supplies change, i will morph my organization style slightly. so since i have way more cards than i used to, i needed to expand. and that’s okay. 🙂 a little change is good for the soul.

have fun out there!


my scrap space // a little tour

hello again!

the beginning of the year brought so many things that are making me happy right now:
>>> new supplies
>>> a desire to purge some old/unused items
>>> a continued love for project life

organizing and making do with what i have has always been a priority in my life.
if i need something, my first thought is “can i make it myself?” or “do i have something that i could make work instead of buying it?”
most of the time, the answer is yes. and in the case of my scrap desk, it’s a hodge podge of well loved items that have had many other functions.

for part one of a series of videos i’m making, i take you through a general tour around my desk. i’m mainly focusing on supplies and how i have made storage solutions from items i already own. scrapbooking and documenting life does not have to be an expensive hobby. you don’t really need the latest or greatest storage solution or gadget or dispenser. for example, one item i don’t mention in the video is my washi tape. (honestly, i ran out of time and didn’t want the video over 10 minutes so i’ll touch on it next time) i store them on a small ikea shelf that i have had for years. i could have bought trays and baskets and such, but i used what i had and it works for me. they are on display so i can see them and they are up and out of the way.
in a small space, storage is key. but as a visual person, if i don’t see it, i don’t use it.

the video below is my first walk through video and it was kinda fun to make! i talk through what’s on my desk and hopefully it doesn’t bore you into hitting the pause button. and please be kind as i also had to edit it using imovie for the first time ever and it’s not as clean as i had hoped for. with a husband as a video editor, my standard are high, so next time i’ll be doing things a bit differently.

but until then, welcome to my scrap space!

thanks for watching, i sure hope you found something that has inspired you! 🙂


gray central station // an organizational project

the launching pad area of my home has been a constant struggle for me.
as much thought and time i put into making it functional and easy, it just never works right.
at times, our areas were too cramped, and we just had to live with what we had.
but moving into our new house has provided many areas that can be super functional.
and this is something a girl can get excited about.

the ebbs and flows of life call for different functions for our house to run smoothly and right now the struggles are:
1) piles of school work/mail that come into the house and
2) no set place to communicate items that need to leave the house.
added to the equation is a daily homework assignment for marshall that requires him to mark off calendar days and record the stories we read. for this he needs to have the calendar at his height and access to the colored pencils he needs for the required pattern.
we also have a 2.5 month perpetual calendar that needs to be in plain sight as well as hot items that we need to be reminded of.

hence, the start of a new project. setting up a functional, living and inexpensive command center.

here’s where it will be: the side of the fridge which is located next to the garage door, which we use for the main door in/out of the house. all traffic in and out passes through this area and it has the most real estate.

Untitled once i

first, i determined that i needed:
1) in/out boxes for each person,
2) a new calendar,
3) a small bucket to hold writing supplies,
4) magnetic clips to hold items and
5) clips to hold notes

so i set off to target. i found these plastic pocket folders in the school supply section for $1.20 each. they are perfect because they’re flat and durable. Untitled

i peeled off the velcro from both sides and also cut off the flap as well as the section where the binder holes were. Untitled

i used a thick kind of double sided sticky tape by 3M and layered the folders 3 inches from the top of the one above it. then i used labels i already owned that are 1″x3.75″ (there are 4 labels per sheet) and used word to print our names on each label.

after hanging the file folders and the calendars with awesome command strips, i began to add the fun parts of the FUNctionality. haha, get it? Untitled

aaaaanyhoo…the file folders were up a bit too high to i moved them down to fit the title card i wanted there. i used a project life 4×6 title card and printed the words GRAB + GO on it, using word. cute huh? and free! Untitled

then i placed a few silver binder clips to each person’s file that could hold a little note or reminder for that person.

Untitled Untitled

now it’s getting close….. i added marshall’s calendar, which is now held by a heavy duty magnet clip you see down there. i was using the magnet clips to hold the bucket and the number flashcards, but it was a bit too wobbly. so i used hooks with adhesive instead. Untitled

in the bucket that i found in the dollar spot at target, i have project life 3×4 grid journalling cards because, well, i have a ton. marshall’s colored pencils and a sharpie for notes along with a few extra binder clips. Untitled

the fun part is updating the calendar.
you guys, i really do love updating my calendar.
some things to note:
1) i do not rely only on this calendar method. everything that goes on here, comes from my digital calendars. i subscribe to both of my kids’ school calendars. (if you’re not savvy or your school doesn’t really get down with the online thing, sorry, but it’s the best way for me to keep track of stuff going on a school that i may not know about otherwise.)
and 2) i use a perpetual method that may confuse you off the get go, but i don’t like to waste calendar space so i just start the next month where the previous month ends.
3) i use the command strips so i can remove the calendars from here and put them on the kitchen table to work on them. Untitled

the other thing i’ve started doing recently is using washi tape for each event. i have always used white boards but the pens are never fine enough to write small and if i have to erase something and put it somewhere else, it just gets messy.
washi tape can be written on with sharpie, then moved anywhere you like.
each family member still gets their own color, which helps everyone know their stuff. birthdays get another color and family events or holidays get another.
the dates are all written in white board marker so when it’s time to start fresh, just remove all the tape and use a baby wipe to clean it off and a paper towel to dry.
and presto! a brand new calendar!Untitled

here it is, the main part of gray central station. my hope is that it will be used with ease and that it doesn’t become the forgotten wall of shame. Untitled

anyways, i spent just under $30 on the 2 calendars ($7 each) and the clips and folders and bucket. not bad for a brand new space of organizational bliss.

and now, i need to figure out how to best use my little side kitchen counter to tackle the incoming papers and action items.
i am envisioning some sort of tray situation…not sure. but no doubt that i will be back to tell you all about it.

so now tell me, what areas of your home do you struggle with and what have you done to make it better?

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my craft space // an update


if you recall the bare bones workstation i created in our new house, you’ll notice a simple design, free of junk and unnecessary clutter.


being fond of the simple kind of life in this space, i was looking to add a bit more in the way of organization and color.

enter // phase 2


after spending a significant chunk of time in this space a couple weeks ago (see: reason why), i realized some flaws in my setup.

number one // surface space was lacking

my trays of paper and supplies were taking up so much desk space that after adding the paper cutter, little trash bin and my phone and water, i barely had room for a single page to work on.


so i found a larger box in my garage (from our local big box store), some empty shoe boxes and reorganized how i stored my 4×6, 3×4 and smaller scraps.


instead of making sections myself like i did here, i used some smaller boxes and containers that were being used elsewhere. two of these are the base and lid from one of my first project life kits.

this lid holds my 4×6 inserts perfectly.


the bottom of that box holds two rows of 3×4 inserts which makes looking through them so much easier.


these other boxes i found at target’s dollar spot. they are perfect for the little scraps and small paper embellishments.


number two // smaller accessories were hidden and not easy to get to or took up too much space

another supply that commandeers my work surface is my growing collection of tapes.

so what better place than up where i can see them all! thankfully i still have a little ikea shelf that ended up being perfect for these little rolls of colorful goodness.


you’d think this would mean i can’t buy anymore tapes since they go from end to end, but wait!…..there’s room for a second row behind there! boom!



my acrylic stamp collection is also growing. they needed their own home and were in a few different places before. in one tray and on top of a bigger ikea shelf was perfect.


oh look! what’s that under the shelf?


i spray painted mason jar rings and nailed the lids to the underside of the shelf and now, those little half pints store chip boards, buttons and flowers that would be otherwise shoved in a box and never seen or used. hello functionality!



all pens and tools used to commune in the same desktop tray. but i covered a narrow shoebox lid and can keep all the journaling pens horizontal like a good little scrapper but all the other tools get an upright position in a mason jar.





we can’t forget about ribbon, twine and rick-rack. they get to mingle in a larger mason jar and stored in the big box of papers and scraps. now it’s super easy to see what i have and can use them frequently!



i’m using a magazine holder for tall sheets of alpha stickers and another little box for a couple circle punches, extra glue sticks and tools i don’t use too often.


magic can happen in small spaces, all you need is a few jars and empty boxes.


happy scrapping!

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our new digs // my closet

seven years.
my clothes spent seven years in a closet the size of a matchbox. a matchbox that i split 75/25 with my dear husband.

but those days are over.

because now, i have a closet that’s about 25% larger and i don’t have to share it. in fact, matt’s closet is the same size and he doesn’t have to compete with skirts or ruffles. lucky him.

but seriously, let’s get back to my closet. it has mirrored doors, did i mention that?

here is the left half…
tops, organized by color. and shoes.


and here is the right half…
the green to blue tops, then dresses, then skirts, then pants. and yes, more shoes. these need to be weeded through. it’s something i just couldn’t do before the move.


a colorful little bunting adds the right funkiness to my accessory area, don’tcha think?


it’s made from fabric scraps and simple sewn together at the top. no hems, no bindings, just raw edges and push pins to hang them up.


a peg board holds earrings, necklaces, bracelets and belts.

two ribbons, attached to the wall at top and bottom, hold my hair clips and fabric flowers.


over the last few years, i have made so much of my own jewelry. but my tastes are changing and i have decided to toss or reuse some of the items i am not wearing anymore. only a select few made the cut and got to remain on the board.

this peg board has been magical. seriously. i need to see my stuff, or it will never get worn. i can easily select the right accessories and they have a permanent home. plus, it’s pretty, and that’s half the battle. 🙂


rings, stud earrings and chunkier bracelets live on my dresser. this is a clear plastic organizer that i bought at target. i think it’s meant for a drawer but it’s perfect for this.





do you struggle with a small space? how do you organize your closet? by sleeve length or by color? i’d love to know!

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weekly wrap up 2013 // week 16+17

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still playing a bit of catch up from april. ya ready?

week 16

tuesday | april 16:

so proud of my dude for being proud to be drug free. i pray he keeps this same attitude when he’s having everything shoved in his face.

love that he sports this #proudtobedrugfree bracelet. #gibsonnow

wednesday | april 17:

33 has been good to me so far. gonna keep that up for the rest of the year.

33 has been good to me so far. gonna keep that up for the rest of the year. #chucks #chucktaylors #33 #iwillprobablywearchuckswhenimfifty

thursday | april 18:

oh how the sun spills in.


it’s beginning to look a lot like moving…which means drive-thru dinners. and this is where i keep my atm card while i wait. 🙂


friday | april 19:

took a day off work to do some personal stuff and preparation for the garage sale tomorrow. one thing was heading to my uncle’s house to pick up some things. mom and i got a large cabinet, a treadmill and a ladder in the back of my yukon. we rock at spacial organization!


signs are happening. soon we hang them around the ‘hood.

Prepping for the big moving sale tomorrow!!! Getting ready to hang up signs.

saturday | april 20:

and there ya have it, the moving sale. a ton of stuff went and we made about $500! anything that was leftover was hauled off to snowline hospice. i didn’t take anything back to the new house….felt so good!


sunday | april 22:

today is a full day of movie making. we have a car chase happening here.


just keeping the actors in the shade and comfortable.


just waiting for his scene.


take 4.


and that’s a wrap folks. the final scene was finished today! if you want to see SHIFT, here’s the link:


his good and patient attitude all day earned him some iPad time. his choice: tom &  jerry episodes on youtube.


and then i treated the boys to ice cream at thrifty’s.


week 17

monday | april 23:

now that SHIFT is in the can, gibson has been tasked to pack every day after school.

it's gettin' really real up in here. we get keys tomorrow and can start moving little stuff before the big move on saturday. #wontbeabletosleep #thegraymoveof2013

tuesday | april 24:

when my guy fill sup my gas tank, he also fills up my love tank.

when my guy fills up my gas tank, he also fills up my love tank. ❤

wednesday | april 25:

we got the keys today!! the paint looks perfect and marshall loves the room to run.


this is my bathroom mirror. the size is incredible, compared to what i had in the old house. and my favorite feature is the window. natural light and morning air are what i need when i’m getting ready for work.


ran over to ikea with my mom and the boys to pick up my craft desk and some other fun goodies!


inspiration for my bedroom came from the very first display in the store. i need to pick up that script fabric and instead of black pillows in the back, i want turquoise.


“don’t bother me, i’m working.”


marshall’s still afraid to get up there.

the boys' new treehouse! built by the talented @jerojo and @calebandrewj #thegraymoveof2013

thursday | april 25:

after work, mom, dad, the boys and i headed to the new house to assemble my desk, gibson’s new desk and work some other little things before we started really moving in.


@minifrantic putting together his new desk #PicTapGo #thegraymoveof2013

i’m so happy over here that i’m doing cartwheels.

I'm so happy in here that I'm actually doing cartwheels! #thegraymoveof2013

friday | april 26:

sometimes, when you need to prop open a door, you just need a target bag and an empty apple juice box. (my dad’s genius idea, becasue that’s how we roll.


making trips down the street. marshall counted and it is exactly 60 seconds between the old house and the new house. i made 3 full trips before 10am and we made a total of 16 trips on friday, just filling up the back of the yukon and getting boxes into the closets they belonged in. my mom is the best.


my new clock from ikea. it’s the very first thing i hung up.


saturday | april 27:

it’s moving day! here’s a tip i found on pinterest. it works with adult clothes too, but we used large hefty duty trash bags. this was a LIFESAVER!

pinterest idea for the win! the best and only way to move hanging clothes!

the friends who helped us move were rock stars! because of all the prep work we did, they got all the big stuff in easily. well, the piano took all 4 of them to lift and carry. we fed everyone pizza and are so grateful for the help!

gettin' there. #thegraymoveof2013

sunday | april 28:

today is a “put-away” day. figuring out where accessories will go is top on the list. 😉


i still can’t believe this whole closet is mine. i don’t have to share. and when i install the shelf below, i’ll have even more space!


bathroom is done! those shelves are wooden spice racks from ikea that i picked up years ago. they still sell them!


my vintage collection of goodies is going up next!


so thankful that i kept my grams standing mixer. and it still works!!


these it is. (it’s changed a bit since i added my gram’s sifter)

my vintage kitchen wall turned out EXACTLY how I envisioned. is it weird if I just want to stare at it for the rest of the night? ❤❗

so many things on my list. and all the time i need! gonna make good use of my next two days off.

happy days!

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our new digs // the main rooms

welcome to our new digs!

to see how we got here, check out this post.

since moving in, there are some rooms that got decorated right away. well, honestly, almost everything got decorated right away because i had so many ideas and decisions were easy to make.

some rooms and walls and closets are going on the back burner because obviously i can’t do everything right away. but i’m ready and super excited to share what’s been done so far.

we’ll start with the back side of the family room…

the piano:

the story of this piano is short and sweet.
it’s my gram’s. well, it was. when she passed last february, she left it to me.
what’s special about it is that most of my memories of her were playing it.
mostly hymnals. and christmas music.
she was a music teacher and music was her passion until she passed.
having her piano is like having a piece of her here.
unfortunately, at the old house, i had no room for it inside.
my only option was to keep it in the garage.
but now, she has a home. and it makes my heart filled with joy.

i knew i wanted to put my alpha wall above the piano. and i knew i wanted it to ascend up the wall and wrap around to the adjoining wall. it’s kinda metaphoric now that i type it out.

here’s how i planned it out:

i arranged and rearranged until it was perfect. i snapped a picture and threw it up on my laptop to reference by eye as i hung each piece one at a time.


and here is how it turned out. i changed some things between the picture and getting it on the walls. sometimes you just have to go with what feels right. 🙂


i figured this was a perfect place for all my records.


i found this cute doily candle holder at IKEA for $4.50.


hello gorgeous.



my crafty space:

at the old house, i had a huge space i created in the garage. it kept ALL of my crafty stuff. sewing, scrapbooking, jewelry stuff, misc projects and overall craftiness.

i also had a desk in the hall closet that i used for mail, office type stuff and a place to put everything that didn’t have a home.

basically i had a ton of stuff. so before we moved, i purged like crazy. because i knew i wanted to condense everything to fit in one place.


tall cabinet: IKEA / aneboda wardrobe. yep, it’s a piece of my bedroom furniture that i bought almost 10 years ago. we were using it as our kitchen pantry at the old house. i covered the front panel with white contact paper and added some circle corks on the side.

desk: IKEA / malm desk with sliding side piece. it’s new and perfect. that piece against the wall is actually on casters and can tuck in under the main part. but because i keep my project life stuff out, i’m keeping it out too.

chair: IKEA / it’s old, but they still sell them. just got a black one for gibson’s room.

rugs: IKEA / yep, i said rugs, plural. there are two red shag rugs that i placed together. each rug was $10. SCORE!


some details:

set of 3 cork hot plates: IKEA / $3
i strung white yarn along the wall and pinned some cute scraps up with those tiny clothespins.
the lamp is a paper lantern i’ve had for years, also from IKEA.







the dining room/side kitchen:

another wall that i’ve had in my head for ever.
say hello to my vintage kitchen stuff:


i have my gram’s sifter, standing mixer, cheese grater, recipe books from the 50’s, hand mixer, pizza cutter, soup ladle and melon baller.
other items are my mom’s marble rolling pin, a gas lamp from my uncle and an old oil bottle. i bought the white and silver strainer at ikea for $4 and the smaller red strainer at raley’s for $5.



the side kitchen:

what else do you call a place like this? it’s not the kitchen-kitchen. (that’s another post in itself.) it’s technically in the dining room, but it’s so much a part of the kitchen. so we labeled it the side kitchen but i knew that i really wanted it to function as the launching pad.

it houses our family calendar, important docs we get to and file away, keys, general officy things. so far, i’ve been able to keep it clean and tidy.

there’s also a perfect little cranny for my gram’s grren kitchen stool. i plan to upgrade the stool next. all the metal will get a clean chrome finish and i will recover the seat and back with a bright yellow fabric.


but this is what makes me the most happy. ladies and gentlemen, we’ve got room for trains.


so that’s that!

questions? comments?

next up is the family room, master bedroom/bath, the boys rooms and the kitchen.

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project life organization // the extras

welcome to the third and final post in my project life organization series. i hope that by the end of this you have some tools and inspiration to begin your own project life album. or at least to begin documenting the everyday stuff of life.

// if you missed the first two parts, you can find them here: part 1: the pictures and part 2: the supplies

what makes project life so special is that it combines scrapbooking like you did as a kid (where it was more about the souvenirs and the memorabilia you didn’t want to throw away) with the modern idea of scrapbooking that includes pictures.

and since the little extras are just as important as the pictures, i include things like schoolwork, gift cards, receipts and artwork within my scrapbook pages. like this:


and this:

today we’re going to talk about an easy way to organize those little extras we save for our albums so that when you’re working on your pages, they don’t get left out.

// supplies you’ll need:

3-ring binder
divider pocket tabs

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i fell in love with these avery divider pocket tabs at one of my old jobs and immediately thought they’d be perfect for this project. but you can use any kind/brand/color you like. my personal preference for these comes from their sturdiness. i’m going to be flipping and stuffing them full each and every month and i want them to last.

the binder is just an oldie. i could go get a cute binder but i’m more about using what i have and not just buying something because it’s cute. i’m getting boring in my old age. 😉


start by labeling each tab for each month of the year.


i always keep my current month at the front of the binder and when that folder gets emptied and i’ve moved on to the next month, i take that divider and place it in the back.

i’ve got love notes, artwork, report cards, a baseball game ticket, graded work, tags from clothes i want to remember and lists i’ve made.






so since i’m a half year behind, this binder allows me to pop anything i want to save for this month into that april folder and it’s all there when i finally get to work on april.

nothing gets lost or forgotten or ends up in a pile on my desk.

so there you have it! i hope you’ve enjoyed this series! i had fun sharing how i organize and prep for project life. if you have any questions, feel free to drop a comment. 🙂

UPDATE: here’s a little video about this process!

happy scrappin’

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